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Old Baldy Trail #372 to Wrightson Summit
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mini location map2017-04-14
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Old Baldy Trail #372 to Wrightson SummitTucson, AZ
Tucson, AZ
Hiking avatar Apr 14 2017
Hiking11.30 Miles 4,128 AEG
Hiking11.30 Miles   8 Hrs   25 Mns   1.76 mph
4,128 ft AEG   2 Hrs    Break20 LBS Pack
 no routes
1st trip
Linked none no linked trail guides
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Wow what a climb! Wade and I spent 5 days in the Tubac, Tumacacori, Green Valley, Madera Canyon area. The highlight of the trip and our main objective was to hike/climb Mt. Wrightson--the highest peak in Southern Arizona at 9,452'. We stayed at the lovely Chuparosa Inn Bed and Breakfast inside Madera Canyon. Of course, Chuparosa is a Spanish slang word for "Hummingbird" and the place hosts numerous bird enthusiasts or "birders."

The first couple of days we spent at the Tubac Country Club and Resort exploring Tubac and Tumacacori. We hiked a short ways down to the Santa Cruz River which was flowing very nicely. It was a very lovely area. Thursday, we moved to our Madera Canyon B&B, Chuparosa.

On Friday morning, we set out from our room at 0645 hours and started the climb on Old Baldy Trail #372. The weather was perfect. It was cool in the morning and the trail was shaded nearly the entire way to the summit. In fact, there was still a little snow on the trail. The elevation to start with was 5,300. The hike from the Old Baldy TH to the Josephine Saddle went at a steady pace--not too fast because we wanted to be sure to save our energy. It was a constant, steady climb the entire way to the summit of Mt. Wrightson. Loose rocks near the top made the hike even more difficult, but I’ve done worst. Once at the summit, we were met by 15 other hikers resting, eating and photographing. Wade and I were the oldest on the summit, so we have that going for us anyway.

The 360 degree views from the top are amazing. You see the Catalinas, Santa Ritas, Tucson Mountains, Rincons, and, of course, you can see Mexico from there. After having our delicious peanut butter and honey sandwiches and taking our photos, we descended thinking this is going to be a lot easier. The 15 others had already left before us. We went down the same way we came up because we did not feel like adding an extra 2 miles taking the Super Trail. The others took the Super Trail.
After two hours, the steep climb down was killing our knees, feet and thighs. We kept wondering if the Super Trail was as steep. Then we met the gang of 15 at the intersection of Old Baldy and the Super Trail at the same time and asked them how the Super Trail was. They explained it was a lot more exposed and lots of fallen trees they had to climb over, but it was not as steep. At least we now know it would not have taken us much more time even though it was a longer trail.

When we finally made it back to our room more than 8 hours and 25 minutes later, we totaled 11 miles. We felt quite accomplished, tired, and badly in need of a shower. We spent the evening on the patio of our B&B talking to the others about our adventure and enjoying a little wine, a little bourbon, and a little story telling. I highly recommend hiking this mountain. Put it on your list!
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